How often does Asian pop music come to mind? From what I can tell, most fans around the planet identify with modern, contemporary, pop and rock from the Western world. “Most” is subjective though, since I say that based on what I surround myself with. Biased? Must be. As it goes, I’m setting off to learn more about J-pop. I leave for Tokyo in a week. I have friends just outside the city on a little farm where I will stay while I crawl the Tokyo music scene. For those of you who would like to learn along with me, I’ll let you know what I find out…
I’m one of those who likes to start from the beginning. Not to get drenched in boring detail, I’ll cut to the chase. Today’s sounds coming out of modern Japanese music leaves the listener with no doubt that its roots are found in their tradition and culture. The contemporary expressive style is undeniably happening in Japan, but it took a while for the music’s true nature to make the merger.
Japan offers a world sound that continues morphing monthly, and has brought Japan into the eye of a very hip audience. A common denominator with the human race is music, and like the rest of the world, musicians were influenced by the Beatles and the American bands of the 60’s like the Beach Boys. New Wave weaved its way in, along with Latin & a splash of Salsa. On the Asian front, Japanese music dominates in rock, pop, hip-hop and jazz. Imagine 3D-scanning early music in Japan, and then print that out to overlay what’s going on now – it’s a wild ride.
Continue reading “Japanese Modern Music”
The US and the UK have spent the last six decades swapping sound and cross pollinating music to give their worldwide contemporary audiences more than we could ever ask for. Until the early 1960s, the stream was mostly a one way flow with the music of Elvis, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and James Brown, to name a few, watering the creative talents of such pioneers as McCartney and Lennon.
But it was the sounds of the Fab Four reaching the ears of teenagers in the United States, that started an entirely new chapter in music making. It seemed as if a floodgate was opened that had been holding back the treasures of British artists from all over the United Kingdom. It may have just been the beginning, but fortunately for us, there is no end in sight.
Delving into the depths of what was once new, but now is old, take the Waterboys for an example. The plumbing has changed with no less than 56 turnovers in band members in the past 28 years, but the Scottish band continues to overfill auditoriums when playing live. Young or old, no one can forget “Fisherman’s Blues”.
Continue reading “4 Bands Conceived In The 60’s, Born In The 2000’s”
World music is an inevitable result of the world as we know it today. Music is the universal language that translates differences into comprehensive agreements between the artists and their listeners. It has the capability of bringing it all together under a massive roof of acceptability, appreciation and soul stirring entertainment.
I realize that this may not be anything new to the lovers of the classics. The Great Masters have had their works played in famous music halls to native, God given jungles, and everywhere in-between for eons of time. But there is a new universal definition that emerged over the last three decades that is undeniably born of the womb of the world.
Taking the deepest expressions of who we are as one extended family and using sounds from every country and every culture along with their histories makes up world music. There is a genre of music coming at us today, which as little as 10 years ago, was not on the scene.
A true blending of world music can be heard from popular artists like Jesse Cook, Robert Michaels, The Gipsy Kings. These are just three of the musicians that are bringing us eclectic yet cohesive sounds that we can’t get enough of. They are top notch in their interpretations, while taking us on a stretch limousine tour visiting the sounds and movements within cultures around the globe.
Continue reading “World Music and Nuevo Flamenco”
I am constantly scouting new talent. My searches take me to different parts of the globe and then sometimes I find the most extraordinary talent in my own back yard. In a word, talent is everywhere. As our world has gotten so much smaller through technology I find my days filled with viewing one Youtube video after another from aspiring artists.
Keep in mind there’s no discounting the part of the equation that includes the fact that there are just under 7 billion people on the planet. And by the sheer numbers, that means there are more of them expressing their artistic selves. More to choose from.
The modern music scene in Europe can often be found to be very different from that in North America. In my opinion, it can be edgier. The US, because of the melting pot it is, has garnered influences from all countries. We don’t have a singular heritage tow service leveraging our ancient culture into the 21st century. There is much diversity.
Continue reading “Germany’s Music Scene”